Page 158 - British Inquiry into Loss of RMS Titanic Day 23 - 26
P. 158
Mr. Butler Aspinall: That is a chart of the North Atlantic, and what Captain Harvey has put there is - The Commissioner: Tell me what you want this evidence for. You shocked me by telling me that I have brought this down upon my own head by something I said 12 days ago. Mr. Butler Aspinall: If I may say so, that is the reason why we had it prepared, in consequence of what your Lordship said. This gentleman has prepared this Chart, and has put upon it the original Southern track which existed in 1892. The Commissioner: It may possibly affect Sir Robert Finlay - I do not know whether it does - when he comes to deal with the question of the Captain’s conduct, but I do not think it will. Do you think it will, Sir Robert? Sir Robert Finlay: I do not think so, my Lord. I think the “direct route” must be used as denoting that route more to the North which used to be followed, the great circle route, passing, it may be, within 30 miles to the Southward of the Virgins. The Commissioner: They are sunken rocks - the Virgins? Sir Robert Finlay: Yes. I am in a difficulty because I have not the book my friend is referring to, we have only the second part. Mr. Butler Aspinall: The Chart shows how the route has been gradually Southing - that is what it comes to. The Commissioner: Now, do you gentlemen want to ask this Witness any questions? Do not, unless you feel impelled to do it by an irresistible force. (The Witness withdrew.) The Commissioner: Who is the next Witness? Mr. Butler Aspinall: I am in a little difficulty. The Commissioner: You have no other Witness? Mr. Butler Aspinall: Yes, I have, but I act under directions, and I am not even second in command here. The Commissioner: Are not you Chief Officer? Mr. Butler Aspinall: No, I am the First Officer, I believe he comes third. Sir Robert Finlay: I think my friend is now in full control, as he is alone. The Commissioner: I have been reading this morning in bed some sailing directions issued by the P. and O. Company, and I find that the Officer in charge for the time being has to take full responsibility. Mr. Butler Aspinall: Oh, I have to do that. Mr. Edwards: This might be a convenient time, so as to avoid your reading them in bed tomorrow, if the Sailing Directions were put in. The Commissioner: I always read in bed. What is it you want? Mr. Edwards: I suggest, so that you should avoid having to read Sailing Directions in bed, that this might be a convenient moment for the Sailing Directions of the Dominion Line with regard to ice, being put in. The Commissioner: By all means.
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